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Agreement in principle on outlines of Iran deal: Russian FM

01 april 2015, 14:34

 Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said early Wednesday that global powers had reached an agreement in principle on "all key aspects" of the outlines of an Iranian nuclear deal, Russian media reported, AFP reports.

Lavrov was speaking after a marathon day of talks powered past a midnight deadline grappling to reach a framework accord aimed at putting a nuclear bomb beyond Iran's reach.

"One can say with relative certainty that we at the minister level have reached an agreement in principle on all key aspects of the final settlement of this issue, which will be put on paper in the coming hours or perhaps within one day," Lavrov said, quoted by Ria Novosti.

But his statement was denied by a senior US official, who told AFP: "All issues have not been agreed."

Other global powers also remained more cautious after a day of tough, intense negotiations in the Swiss lakeside town of Lausanne.

Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif told reporters as he emerged from the talks that he hoped to finalise the framework later Wednesday.

"We have accomplished quite a bit but people needed to get some rest and start over early in the morning," Zarif told said.

"I hope that we can finalise the work on Wednesday and hopefully start the process of drafting" a final accord.

Any political understanding reached in Lausanne is due to guide the negotiators going forward as they seek a comprehensive deal by June 30.

Britain, China, France, Germany, Russia and the United States have been meeting for about 18 months trying to reach a deal to end more than a decade-long standoff with Iran.

The Islamic republic has long denied seeking an atomic bomb, but global powers remain wary of its nuclear ambitions.

Meanwhile, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius left the talks to return to Paris to take part in a cabinet meeting.

"He will return as soon as it is useful," his office said.

He was the second minister to fly home after China's Wang Yi.

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